Wood alcohol, not whisky!
Compañía Destiladora Quellón
Christopher Walker suggests that the line was of 60cm. gauge and that it had three Orenstein & Koppel 0-6-0Ts (Nos. 7489, 7490 of 1920 and 12686 of 1935). Certainly these three locomotives are recorded in the O. & K. loco lists as having been delivered for 'Comunidad Quellón' (1). The company seems to have had several names for, after a period with the title at the head of the page, by the 1930s they became the Destilatorio de Quellón SA. At some stage they had also traded under the name of the Sociedad Explotadora de Chiloé y Destilatorio S.A.
The plant was to the immediate west of the town centre, along the waterfront (calle Capitan Alcazar). The site was cleared after the factory closed around 1952 and later reused for a fish freezing plant. This part of Chiloé sank about 2 metres as a result of the Valdivia earthquake in 1960 and as a result it may be difficult to visualise the original seashore.
Neither of the two museums in the town have any photographs of the plant or its railway. However, the picture below was found by Señor Raul Moroni in the University of Chile's online collection (2). It shows a single line of track stretching out along the muelle from the plant. The original caption implied that this was the 'establicimiento de la Compañia Austral.'
From the other end of the muelle it can be seen that the single track curves west along the shore.
A photo, recently discovered by Señor Moroni, shows a small German-built steam loco and a coupler of bogie flats, one with vertical stakes appropriate for the carriage of timber.
A German-built loco, probably O&K 12686 of 1935, with a selection of empty and loaded timber wagons.
Take care not to get confused between each of the place-names beginning with a 'Q' in Chiloe. As well as Quellón, there are Queilén, Quilán, and Quilantar.
The Chiloe Island 60cm gauge railway